Craft Crazy

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Alright, I admit it. I've gone completely insane.
I was walking around Bumbershoot with Ka-chan yesterday and [instead of just looking in wonder at the peoples' amazing crafts for sale] I started thinking. I thought about all the ways that I might do some of these things myself - with stuff we just have lying around the house.
So, since last night, I have been on a mission to find the most interesting and useful recycled craft ideas out there. I've accumulated a lot of sites and a big list of things I would like and things I have to use [the biggest inspiration was my closet full of stuffed animals, after a while it just seems that they're too cluttering and need a makeover].
After my T-shirt massacre, I feel that I need to branch out and do some other interesting things - hopefully that will create useful [and maybe salable] items for this year. Thankfully, it also fits into my monetary plan and improve-J-through lessons plan.
Something else to note, Ramadan begins tomorrow.

Back Home Again

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I have arrived home after a week and a half of our two-person crazy fest. Shouting/taking pictures/watching Current TV/dancing/clashing over musical tastes/changing clothes 50 bajillion times/talking until late hours about everything - that was the vacation time. I think we got a little bit on each other's nerves, but that's probably because I'm more surly than she...
But, no matter! Now that I am back home, Heathy's in school, and I am furiously trying to beat procrastination to a pulp [I know this is an old story, but it must be said in order to make me feel responsible for it]. I am currently working on all the college essay material that I have. I will finish this stuff by the time school starts - but I have no idea about my scholarship applications or anything else. At least I have five more days.
Other than that, has anyone noticed how hard it is to find a one-piece women's swimsuit for a reasonable price? It's all bikinis and tankinis and whatever else, but no one has a frickin' one-piece suit. I have gone to as many as 8 places by now and everything is just heinously expensive or nonexistent *grumble*.
On another other note, the Democratic National Convention has inspired me to be more involved with internal politics. I am usually informed, but not invested in, national news while international and scientific are my fields of choice. When I heard Bill Clinton last night it was amazing and just made me feel proud to be an American - which I haven't been able to say in a pretty long time [perhaps ever...].
The world is coming to an end! And, when it does, we'll be singing.
"It's too late, we're gonna dieeee..."

Exquisite Intentions

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Heathy and I have been palling around the mud huts for days now, and it is quite entertaining and also quite infuriating. Mainly because of things that are out of our control. Like money, trains, and clothing sizes.
It's interesting to be here, in the same house [which has been vastly improved, I would say, cleanliness-wise] and with the same things breathing down our necks. I had a strange stitch of wanting for home yesterday night, thinking about how clutter in my house to this magntude would probably send me seizuring but how it seems to be improvement here. I got particularly repulsed by the kitchen - which just disturbs me because of the rotting fruit. But it's not like this place is bad, it's just that I am a sort of clean freak (didn't know that until just recently - I literally wanted to start mucking out the pots and pans).
On the other side of it, the money is still a constant problem in Heathy's house. And her parents are really good at putting stuff off so that there is less money and more hassle later on - similar to our government. But that, I think, is a character flaw. As well, the town is a hard sell for me. People and location are the equivalent of my worst nightmare: clique-ish, suburban, and horridly dry at times.
However, this bitching has just been wallowing in my stomach lately without outlet. It's hard not to be optimistic here because of Heathy's personality of intense idealism. Though she gets sad at times, I admire her strength in feeling ok about living here. For myself, it makes me appreciate my own city and situation - and want to improve upon it by saving cash.
Next year will be another year of figuring out who I am. This year [as I talk to myself in that strange way, as if I were an outsider in my own head-office] we have found out my interests, weaknesses, needs for improvement, strengths, and malfunctions. Next year, it will be time for us to take this information to the next level and really bring me out into the open. I feel much less scared than when I started this blog [which, although it was not that long ago, I can read back and see exactly how hard it was for me to open up].
For now, it's back to the living with love in our hearts and idealism in our heads - a new but startlingly interesting subject for me.

Leaving Once Again

Friday, August 15, 2008

Is it odd that airports seem to be normal now?
I feel like I was literally just there, whether it was coming in, leaving, or showing someone off. I love to travel and airports and all of these things though, so it's not a foreboding feeling - more excitement. I'm just sad that the summer is coming to a close... We are traveling during the year, but it will feel more like liberation from a cage than a lifestyle.
On a completely different note, I embarked on my aid to political candidates for the first time. Hooray! I have now gone canvassing for voters [a.k.a. become an annoying door-to-door voter pamphlet girl... albeit unsuccessful because my partner and I got lost] and done phone calls [telesolicitation galore!] and played badminton behind a campaign office. I feel fulfilled. I actually really enjoyed helping out - after the early jitters of talking to old people that I don't know and the fear that I would start hysterically laughing. As well, it gave me some cool ideas for stories, which is always a plus.
...I completely lost my train of thought.
But, I have found that I am going to do picture stories and have some inspiration created from my own body of work. And watch the Olympics. And try my bestest to finish things that need to be finished eventually.
See you in a while, Seattle! Moorpark/L.A. here I come!

On Being Alive

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

So, I guess I have to face the facts that a college essay will not write itself and that I am not superwoman, but the lovably fallible J who hopes to complete everything in the next three weeks. Haha [if only that would happen]. However, I do have a pretty good chunk of my list done from previous posts ago. When I go to Heathy's I am sure that I will explode, reanimate and then go on a conquest of the world. It's quite logical, really.
Anyway, for the past weekend I have holed myself up in my house with a tiny cold and a lot of sewing [since I cut up all the t-shirts that I never wear because they're too big/not shaped right] and now I have a closet that is half as filled as it was before [and a nice skirt made out of t-shirt scraps! yippee!]. I watched the Olympics and Michael Phelps [who is definitely the American pretty boy - but also my personal favorite, I don't know about you] and was interested by the fact that the U.S. gymnastics team has a lot of color to it [or more than I would expect - I'm using these brackets too much, aren't I?]. There is an Indian guy and a Chinese guy on the mens team, the women are coached by a Romanian woman and Shawn Alexander is coached by a Chinese guy. Also, on the amazing swimming relay team there was a black guy swimming with Phelps and the rest when they beat the French after a come-from-behind stroke. As my dad would say, "only in America."

Interested to see the product of my sewing? Here's a picture of me in that very t-shirt skirt.

Missing... Everybody

Thursday, August 7, 2008

It seems that I've basically been using Facebook to miss people right and left. Everyone from Ka-chan to Nina to Heathy (who I'll see in 8 days, by the way) to friends that I will soon see in school. It's interesting to me that we miss so many people in our lives. Or maybe I'm just getting philosophical at midnight - who knows?
Since everyone is gone, there's a feeling of emptiness in my house. Not necessarily of the actual people, but of their presence. Of the feeling that someone else is living in this big cavernous space we've created for ourselves. In pre-college, 4 girls were living in a room equivalent to the size of my parents' bedroom. And we were happy.
Space is always a good thing and I enjoy having some time alone now where I can just sit and think and not worry about bothering people with loud noises or unsavory subjects. However, I still feel that I would rather live closely with someone than rest in this spacious crypt for the rest of my life. It's true that there are three people living here, but one is disconnected and the other is at work so it's not really the same. College will be good for me.
I really do miss a lot of people. Not just for the privilege of Facebooking and Bumper Sticker-ing them 50,000 times, but for the idea that I lack their presence in my direct life now. I must be a little spoiled by all the wonderful people I'm surrounded with.

Which Cows Should We Use?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Though it is unnecessary to explain what the above title means, I thought I'd acknowledge that Heathy and I are crazy enough to want to take cows all the way back to New York. It might work... ya never know.
I should probably be working on things, but something about the contagious 'it is summer' attitude just hit me. A little late, but probably because in NY we were always doing something. Now all I want to do is sit at home and take long walks and paint my nails red. I guess it's some type of existence. But, what I've been doing with all this time at home nonsense is I've been making grand plans again. So! I now have both a financial and environmental plan for our lives next year. I am already having talks with the Man In Charge (Da) and he approves mostly. Perhaps there are some quirks to hammer out, but that will be for later.
My financial plan consists of closing off all frivolous spending, such as outside food, accessories such as books and clothing, and gas for the car. In this way, we will save money for the essentials like fixed computers and house repairs (as an added benefit, bike riding tones the legs!). As well, I am going to stipend myself on going out to places and doing things that cost money while simultaneously attempting to get a job. In this way, my preparation for college should be much easier - and I won't blow all my cash once I get there.
My environmental plan is not yet fully developed, but our first step will be to become completely bag-less. I can easily use scrap yarn to knit bags for us [and there are attractive patterns on Knitty] as well as the multitude of reusable tote bags given out by/really cheap at different establishments. Along with driving less, giving away/moving out inutile items [like clothing never worn, things that take up space], and buying organic, I think we will move to the next step in environmental ness.
These are all things to lead us to a better life and better world because, frankly, we need to start taking measures into our own hands. We don't need all this stuff and we certainly don't need to pile on more while a. wasting money and b. not using it. Hopefully things will work out and I can go to college already trained to work on these same factors.
See? Sometimes my grand schemes are LOGICAL [alongside these same schemes are the 'finish all your work in the next two weeks' and 'lose weight' plans however...]
I have successfully stopped biting my nails by the way, I consider this a big step in hygienic living.

Hyperventilation

Sunday, August 3, 2008

You know something everyone should know about me right off the bat? I hyperventilate when I have too many people and/or too much clutter in my house. I think it's my little OCD thing. I don't know though.
I only say this because we have my aunt and cousin visiting from Finland; they're nice enough but for some reason I have a strange reaction to these types of things. Anyway...
After returning from New York, things are pretty mild here [and veryyy quiet...]. I've been reconnecting with old friends and Facebooking the new ones [hooray for our instant gratification culture!]. My steady diet of Adbusters, National Geographic, and many many new books has kept me alive and I think my waistline might be thinning out - or lying to myself, whichever one works.
We went to Seaside, Oregon for a traditional vacation hangout on the beach, then stopped at Powell's bookstore in Portland [another extremely large and awesome place... I bought Pablo Neruda, which made me joyous inside]. We then scurried back up to Seattle for some tourist-y views of the city and stuff that the general population doesn't often gravitate towards. It's actually strange how that happens. You think you 'know' the city because you've lived there, but you haven't done the common banal things... hmm.
Other than that, I've been trying to squeeze in some time for working on school stuff and writing out the history of my entire existence [kidding] while still going outside so that the evil invisible bat monkeys don't get me [not kidding].
Eventually, I might have to declare insanity. Oh well.